Printed from NYHebrew.org

Just a Little Push

Thursday, 22 March, 2018 - 10:20 pm

We’re just 7 days away from the “big night”. Next week at this time, millions of Jews across the globe will re-experience and internalize the Divine revelation of the Exodus. The minutes and moments of the seder are magical and potent. They carry in them blessings; the magnitude of which we cannot fathom. 

Sounds a little overwhelming? Will my evening truly be transformative and other-worldly? How can “little me” – a Jew who is not really that observant or Jewishly educated – expect to be internalize the grandeur and holiness of the evening? 

The Talmudic story might give us the answer: 

Rabbi Chanina ben Dosa once saw a huge stone which he wished to donate to the Temple. The stone was too big for him to move by himself and he could not afford to hire laborers to help him move it. Suddenly he had a vision. “Push the stone with your little finger”, he heard G‑d call to him. And so Rabbi Chanina ben Dosa pushed the stone. Miraculously he watched as angels helped him move the stone to the Temple. 

What is the lesson of this story? Whenever a task or process seems overwhelming or too big it is worthwhile to remember the following: All G‑d asks is that we push with our little finger. We have the ability to tap into the infinite, we just have to "open the door" and do our best. 

And when we do, we will find ourselves succeeding beyond our wildest dreams. With the help from Above, we are able to accomplish far more than we ever could by ourselves. However, we have to make that first move, even if it is only a little push, to tap into the infinite, to bring down the Divine blessings into our everyday lives. 

And so, as we set forth on this week leading to Passover and we attempt to prepare ourselves to internalize the magic of the evening, let’s give a push with our finger and take the first step. True, we might not be able to learn, appreciate, or understand the depth, meaning, and richness of every facet of the seder. But if we spend just a little bit of time this week allowing the message of the holiday to sink in; if we do our little part - G‑d will do the rest and bestow upon us, at the seder, His infinite blessings just as He did ”in those days and this time”.

I encourage you to do some independent study: www.nyhebrew.org/passover

You’ll find stories and insights, videos and audio classes, and much more. 

May the words we uttered at the conclusion of last year’s seder come true and we be “this year in Jerusalem”! 

Gillie and our children join me is wishing you a Shabbat Shalom,

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